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Bare minimum Zaino products:

z-6 (two bottles)
z-2 (one bottle)
z-5 (one bottle)
zfx (one bottle)

You can use any mild carwash but Zaino Z-7 is best.
It is pH balanced and cleans very nicely without removing any of your Zaino polish.

Also nice to have but not essential are the Zaino Tire Dressing (Z-16) and the
Claybar (Z-18). Zaino makes a nice leather seat product, a plastic cleaner, a glass polish and several other non-essential products.

Here are the initail steps of the Zaino process (at least how I do them).

-Wash the car with Dawn dishwashing liquid. Use a non-scratching wash mit. I use a micro-fiber mit. Make sure it is completely free of dirt and debris. Make sure your bucket is completely clean too.
(edit: you can also use two wash buckets with a grit guard...one with clean water for rinsing the mit and another containing the suds..credit to jinxxycat)

-Rinse. After you are done rinsing with your spray nozzle, remove the nozzle and
rinse tha car with the stream of water from the hose only (no nozzle, no thumb over the hose). Use the gentle stream of water to "push" off the beads of water.
This is a neat trick that will decrease your drying time significantly!

-Clay the car with a solution of Z-7 and water. A quart of water and a cap ful of Z-7 should do it. Use a clean spray bottle and do small sections at a time. Make sure the clay glides over the paint easliy and does not stick. If it does, spray on more lubricating solution! Continue to knead the clay to keep a clean, fresh surface against the paint. DO NOT DROP the clay! If you do, discard that bar and get another.

-Wash with Zaino Z-7 car wash. Do the tires and wheels first and then use a separate bucket of suds to finish the rest of the car.

-Rinse as above.

-Dry the car with a microfiber towel. I prefer the waffle weave microfiber towels. I like to use a shop vac to suck out the drops of water in tight areas that you can't get with the towels. Make sure you do not touch the paint with the vacuum hose.
(edit: you can also use compresed air or a leaf blower to remove water from the door handles, emblems, around lug nuts and side view mirrors)

-Do a Z-6 misting. It is just like using Windex on glass. Just spray on a light mist of Z-6 detailing spray and wipe it off (in). You do not let it dry, just take it right off. I use the Z-6 on all of the glass as well. It cleans well and rain zips right off.

-Apply your first layer of Z-5 polish. You can add 2 to 4 drops of ZFX "flash cure" accelerator to ONE OUNCE of polish. If you do this the drying time will be decreased to one hour or less depending on the temperature and humidity. I use 2 drops if it is very hot and dry and 4 when it is colder and humid. I recommend applying Zaino polish in the shade, but it will work fine in the sun as well. It will just dry alot faster. Take note that the small mixing bottles you get from Zaino are TWO OUNCE bottles, so you only fill them ½ way up (one ounce). This amount will do the entire car easily. In fact , if you apply the polish in thin enough layers (and thin is the best way to apply it), you can get two layers on the car with one ounce. Zaino should not look like wax on a car. In other words, it should not look hazy and white. It should look like the paint is only a little blurry. If it looks the least bit white, you've applied too much.
(edit: I use a dime sized drop of polish per quarter panel)

Another method is to not use the ZFX and just apply the polish to the paint. This is fine but it will take 6-8 hours to cure and limit the number of layers you can get done during each detailing session. I often apply two layers with the ZFX, and the third one without. I apply the final layer and let the car sit in the garage overnight, then buff it out the next day. You can tell if the polish is ready to be removed if when you smudge it lightly with your finger, ALL of the polish comes off and you see a very shiney surface. If it is the least bit blurry it is not ready.

The polish goes on with the applicator Zaino sends you. I like to slightly dampen it first with water. This helps the polish go on smoother and more evenly. I recommend side to side straight line applications on the horizontal surfaces of the car (hood, roof), and up and down straight lines on the vertical surfaces (doors & quarter panels). Do not use a circular motion to lessen the chance of swirl marks and scratches.

-Buff off the polish with a microfiber towel.

-Another misting of Z-6.

-Repeat another layer of Z-5 (with or without ZFX)

-Buff off

-Another misting of Z-6

-Final layer using Z-2 this time (with or without ZFX)

-Buff off

-Final misting of Z-6

This is my method. You don't HAVE to do all three layers nor do you HAVE to do all of the prep work (Dawn & Claybar), but the results will be much better if you do. Many feel that the Zaino process is too complicated and involved and want to use "easier" products. It is important to realize that the prep process is NOT exclusive to Zaino. It should be done with ANY product for the best results. Also, you do not need to apply three layers or even two for that matter. If you want to do just one, go for it!

For maintenance all you need to do is wash with the Z-7 and mist with the Z-6 after drying. This will be enough to keep your ride looking great between your BIG detailing sessions.

Good Luck!

The Doc

The protocol posted here was originally posted by Dr. Bonz in another forum. I have attempted to recreate it here to assist first time Zaino users.
 

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Thank you! More stuff to add to my garage for the summers here.
 
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